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Whitelees Decoy

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Decoy control bunker, 2007, Fox
Decoy control bunker

Records indicate that a World War II Naval Starfish decoy was located on Whitelees Moor, to the south of Greenock. Part of the . Site number GG2. Records also indicate the presence of another decoy on the moor, but give no further information other than the site number, GG3.

Local reports also suggest the presence of two naval decoys in this area. A QL (lighting) decoy, located in the area between the bunker and the Gryffe Reservoir to the south, and a QF (fire) decoy to the west, in the area where the cottage road meets the Old Largs Road. Aerial views suggest boat shapes in the area of the QF site.

Internal ladder rungs, 2007, Fox
Internal ladder rungs

The remains of a brick and concrete bunker survive on the moor, and appear to be of Air Ministry pattern CTD 557/41. The bunker lies on the north side of a gated single track road leading past Whitelees Cottage, with the road having a large warning painted on its surface, "PRIVATE ROAD, 24 HR ACCESS, NO PARKING." The bunker is in near complete condition, and would originally have been given additional protection in the form of earth banking around the walls, however this has largely been eroded. Various holes can be seen in the walls, and these would have allowed the various control for the decoy signals to exit the bunker. The metal rungs of the emergency escape ladder still lead to the roof hatch, and would also have served to allow the crew to look out from the top of the bunker and observe the operation of the decoy, under cover of a metal shield - a box with viewing holes, placed over the hatch.

The size of the bunker suggests it would have controlled decoy fires on the moor, and would have been a QF decoy. The fires would have been arranged in baskets, within firebreak areas to prevent them spreading out of control, and little, if anything, tends to remain of these.

Flooded bomb crater, 2007, Fox
Flooded bomb crater

There are a number of circular features visible on the moor, now water filled, and believed to be bomb craters suggesting the decoys were effective. This example lies to the northwest of the bunker.


Entrance, 2007

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Related Canmore/RCAHMS and ScotlandsPlaces (SP) entries:-



Aerial views



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